Saturday, December 17, 2011

In Memoriam: Christopher Eric Hitchens

When I read the news that Christopher Hitchens has died I just felt frozen for a minute and I couldn't believe the words I was staring at on my screen. It seemed like a big joke. If there was a man whom I thought Death would avoid for as long as it could, it would be Christopher Hitchens. He could probably say something clever to Death's face and send him laughing, telling him to come back another day.

But December 15, 2011 would now be remembered as a sad day for the freethinking world. He was 62 and battling esophageal cancer, he put up a good fight for as long as he could.

I never got to see Hitchens in person. I never personally knew the man. But I will be forever grateful to him for the things he has done. Watching Hitchen's videos on Youtube and other various websites, reading his books, writings and listening to whatever audio I manage to come across somehow made me feel I have an ally in him.
His works had a very strong influence in my life especially his criticisms about religion. He made me realize that I need not be ashamed to admit that I am a non-believer. I should not be ashamed on calling people out on their bullshit. I should not be ashamed when my thoughts and opinions would not agree with the majority. Sometimes I could not understand what he was talking about, especially when it was about politics. Simply because I was not as informed as him. But then again, we also really do not have anyone we can agree with 100%. That is just absurd.

His powerful words stirred the fire of strength and life in me. He showed that one need not be afraid to stand up for what they truly believed in. One should be free to voice out his opinions and declare his thoughts. And even though your thoughts may not always go well with the majority, if you speak the truth and you have the evidence to back it up then be strong, be firm, speak up and truly the world will listen.

The exposures he did on famous personalities at one point or another has made him quite unpopular. Yet, since he could back-up his opinions, the world listened and watched and what he said forever changed it.

My heart truly aches for the loss of this great thinker. Yet I am also feeling grateful that I was able to live in a time when he lived. I got to witness his work. He may be dead but his works and words will live on.

“Hitchens’ mastery of a logical argument along with his confident demeanor gave many the courage to come out of the atheist closet,” Roy  Speckhardt said about him.

Hitch I salute you!

Some of Christopher Hitchens' quotes that I love and treasure.

“You don’t so much as become an atheist as find out that’s what you are. There’s no moment of conversion. You don’t suddenly think ‘I don’t believe this anymore.’ You essentially find you don’t believe it,” Christopher Hitchens said in an interview with Sally Quinn.

"What can be asserted without evidence can also be dismissed without evidence."

"For a lot of people, their first love is what they'll always remember. For me it's always been the first hate, and I think that hatred, though it provides often rather junky energy, is a terrific way of getting you out of bed in the morning and keeping you going. If you don't let it get out of hand, it can be canalized into writing. In this country where people love to be nonjudgmental when they can be, which translates as, on the whole, lenient, there are an awful lot of bubble reputations floating around that one wouldn't be doing one's job if one didn't itch to prick."

"The only real radicalism in our time will come as it always has — from people who insist on thinking for themselves and who reject party-mindedness."

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